What is the difference between being well and being healthy?

When most of us think of wellness we relate it to being healthy, right?  But healthy tends to just imply lack of disease, but being well and having wellness is defined in a book entitled Core Concepts in Health as the “ability to live fully…with vitality and meaning.”  This is about much more than eating well, exercising regularly, and maintaining routine doctor visits and check-ups.  In fact, there are many dimensions of wellness, which include social, spiritual, emotional, intellectual, social, environmental, and of course, the physical.  Some models include other components such as, financial and occupational.

Living is much more than being healthy and free of disease, but it about growing and learning, and experiencing life.  The National Wellness Institute defines wellness as, “an active process through which people become aware of, and make choices toward, a more successful existence”.  

In his article, Kevin Norris goes on to say,

“It is the integration of the six interactive dimensions that continually influence and balance each other and create overall wellness. Each dimension forms a piece of a lifestyle pie; without one piece, there is a void, a missing link that imbalances the remainder of the dimensions. Life becomes askew when a piece of that pie is missing; the remaining fundamentals of wellness will be missing something crucial. Some believe that if one’s life is not focused on all six dimensions, dissension among the rest will exist and life will be more demanding and unstable.”

So, what is your wellness?  Take this quiz from the Simon Fraser University to learn more about your own wellness.

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